Employment starts the year on the right foot and adds 25,294 sharpened in the last month

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After a month of slowdown in job creation in December, the data available up to mid-January suggest that the labor market would have started the year on the right foot. The number of affiliates increased by 25,204 on average in the last month -between December 15, 2022 and January 15, 2023- according to the new formula to calculate the seasonally adjusted data, which eliminates the calendar effects, published this Tuesday by the Ministry of Social Security and Migration Inclusion. This increase places the total number of contributors at 20.26 million.

The data for the moving month is more positive than that of the immediately preceding period (from mid-November to mid-December) chen 7,357 jobs were created on a seasonally adjusted basis. Until now, the department headed by José Luis Escrivá published around the 15th a forecast of how employment would behave throughout the month based on how the first fortnight had been. With the new calculation, the Ministry takes that first fortnight as a reference -in this case, from January 1 to 15- and makes an average with the data of the two previous weeks. In this way, it incorporates only real data that, as they explain, is also more stable and better reflects the situation of the labor market.

The methodology that the Ministry has begun to use sieves the daily affiliation data and eliminates the seasonal effects (the “high frequency” figures, as the technicians call them), in such a way that the ups and downs brought about by the summer season, the Christmas campaign… The new way of calculating this figure “is based on two advances developed in recent months that provide a clearer vision of the evolution of affiliation and that allow monitoring of the labor market with data of greater frequency than the monthly, the only ones available so far”, point out from Social Security.

With the daily affiliation data without seasonal adjustment, 42,387 new contributors would have been recorded at the start of the exercise. The new statistics will not reflect such strong fluctuations in job creation or destruction in a month, as in fact happened with the January data. The Ministry will continue to make public the data of the average monthly evolution and without seasonal adjustment, which will allow us to see, when comparing with other exercises, how employment is progressing in that same seasonal season.

The ongoing pension reform

In the midst of the statistical changes, the Ministry continues to negotiate with the social agents and, above all, with the political forces the second part of the pension reform. The conversations have been affected by Escrivá’s intention to include in the text the extension of the computation period from 25 to 30 years (with the possibility of excluding the two worst years of listing). The talks are progressing well, and while the larger elements of the package generate sufficient, if not complete, consensus, there are additional elements that are being finalized.

To avoid difficulties such as those that resulted in the approval of the labor reform by the minimum, the Government is negotiating with unions and businessmen, transferring these proposals to the formations of the parliamentary arc and speaking again with the social agents. All through discreet conversations and without an official call to the dialogue table. In principle, the Government’s objective was to have the reform proposal ready before the end of this month, since it promised Brussels that it would enter into force from January 1.

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